THE BLOG

'I'm An Older Bride, How Can I Keep My Independence In Marriage?'

You will not be the same person in a year as you are today. Being a wife and a stepmother will undoubtedly change you, and it's likely that you will not have anything near the same amount of alone time that you currently have.
This post was published on the now-closed HuffPost Contributor platform. Contributors control their own work and posted freely to our site. If you need to flag this entry as abusive, send us an email.
Hands of bride and groom showing their wedding rings
Hands of bride and groom showing their wedding rings

Reader Free To Be Me writes,

I am going to be an older bride and I have spent so many years doing my own thing. Even through all the boyfriends of the past, it was fairly easy to get time to myself. I am so used to doing what I want when I want and sometimes I struggle with having to take new people into consideration like my fiance and soon-to-be 12-year-old step-son. Don't get me wrong, I am loving all of my new family relationships but I don't want to lose myself in all this change. My fiance is really good when I need time to myself and I appreciate that so much. I guess I'm trying to work on life balance -- how to balance giving between me and others... that's my real issue.

Dear FTBM,

Many people embark on new life experiences trying to figure out how NOT to change, when change is the best and most valuable part of any major transition or new stage. This is likely because change is scary. You will not be the same person in a year as you are today. Being a wife and a stepmother will undoubtedly change you, and it's likely that you will not have anything near the same amount of alone time that you currently have.

How about you reframe your goal as to throw yourself into your new life completely and see how that feels, and then back out time for yourself as needed? Looking back, you may always wish you gave more of yourself, and didn't keep yourself back and guarded. As an older woman with years of single life under your belt, you know that you can be alone, but the real challenge here is giving yourself over to marriage and stepparenthood with your whole heart. If you're not ready to throw yourself into this wholly, may as well stay unmarried.

Of course, you can schedule time during the week for your hobbies and seeing friends. This is positive for anyone. But try and enjoy and embrace the change that will occur within marriage, rather than buffering against it in advance. This is a more healthy and generous way to enter into marriage, at any age.

Good luck and congratulations! Till we meet again, I remain, The Blogapist Who Says, Embrace The Honeymoon Period; It Doesn't Last Forever.

This post was originally published here on Dr. Psych Mom. Follow Dr. Rodman on Dr. Psych Mom, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest. Order her book, How to Talk to Your Kids about Your Divorce: Healthy, Effective Communication Techniques for Your Changing Family. Learn about Dr. Rodman's private practice, including therapy, coaching, and consultation here. This blog is not intended as diagnosis, assessment, or treatment, and should not replace consultation with your medical provider.